I believe someone mentioned that sometimes the sample sizes contain different formulations of the products, so in case it is significant -- I did, in fact, use a sample size. Anyway, this was my first HE mascara and I found it inferior to many DS mascaras I've experimented with (...unfortunately all of them irritate my eyes). It basically darkened my lashes -- no lengthening or volumizing effects whatsoever. And it made them look rather clumpy and crispy. And then it flaked and smudged.
I've tried quite a few DS m/u removers and I think this is the most effective and least irritating to my highly sensitive eyes. While it's a bit steeper in price than some of the other removers, because just a bit of product does the trick, it ends up being the more economical choice. I do wish the packaging design was a bit different: I would prefer a smaller opening.
So, I have very mixed feelings towards this product. On the one hand, I find it to be very buildable and, at least initially, to provide me with dramatic volume and length (...unfortunately the mascara starts to migrate from lash to cheek pretty quickly...). Perhaps its greatest attribute, however, is that it's one of the few mascaras that doesn't irritate my hypersensitive eyes and leave them mildly puffy (but I don't know why this is, and I wouldn't start touting its hypoallergenic benefits for other make-up wearers). However: it doesn't stay put! I have terrible raccoon eyes after just a couple hours of wear, and end up constantly wiping my delicate undereye area. Secondly, the brush it comes with is terrible, particularly after a couple of uses -- I think the mascara dries and hardens on it, and I found that I was tugging at my lashes attempting to apply it satisfactorily. Substituting with another brush (which I washed regularly) seemed to lessen this issue, but I think the raccoon eyes factor is permanently consigning this one to the dustbin. Wish I could give it 2.5 stars instead of 3.
I can't believe what a difference switching to this brush has made. It performs way better than the pricier brush it replaced (although admittedly that one was overdue for disposal, yikes). As reviewers before me have indicated, this one is dense, soft, and provides for great application. So cheap, too -- I'm truly in disbelief over the value. (And another added perk, of course, is that it's apparently manufactured in an "eco-conscious" manner.) Yet another great benefit is that I no longer feel compelled to experiment with new powders -- I was attributing my cakey look to the powder I was using when it was, in fact, the brush. Verdict: yay!
Eye Makeup Remover -Marcelle - Eye Makeup Remover for Waterproof Mascara
franny06 2/28/2010 12:29:00 PM
I just switched back to this after using up my Neutrogena, and I am delighted at how much less drying it is, and how effortlessly it removes my heavy eye make-up. (Not to knock Neutrogena -- it is probably great for those only needing to remove minimalist make-up.) More expensive, but worth it for me because it allows me to continue wearing my dramatically-applied, super-indelible eyeliner without wreaking havoc on the delicate skin of my lids :) Edit: While I'd still recommend this product to others, I'd do so with qualifications: I found that the residue ended up plumping up my lids a bit...? Not sure if that was due to too much moisturizing or it was a bit of an allergic reaction (no redness, just... puffy eyelids) but I didn't like that effect -- but others may appreciate it.
Eyeliner -Lise Watier - Lise Watier Waterproof Eyeliner
franny06 11/24/2008 2:35:00 PM
Has been a staple of my routine for quite some time. This is, by far, my favourite eyeliner, and I have experimented with many. I find this stubbornly clings to my lids like no other, and for something with such incredible staying power, applies relatively smoothly with very minimal tugging. I have this in black-brown, and don't find it 'flat' like some other black-brown liners I've tried...
Eye Primer -Too Faced - Shadow Insurance, Anti-Crease Eye Shadow Primer
franny06 11/24/2008 2:29:00 PM
I have exceptionally oily eyelids, but remain stubbornly resolved to find a primer/shadow/liner combination that permits me to indulge in my fondness for dramatic eye makeup... Of the array of primers I've sampled, including UDPP, this is definitely the best. If I'm careful to cover the most oil-prone parts of my eye area, my eye makeup does not budge until I choose to remove it -- sometimes after upwards of 12 hours. I found SI to have two advantages over UDPP. First, it's far less drying than UDPP. Initially, I deemed UDPP a godsend for my oily lids, but it quickly fell out of favour when I realised my lids were starting to get crepey and apparently...droopy (this might be rather attributable to some sort of minor allergic reaction that produced just barely detectible under-the-skin bumps...? Whatever the case, my lower lid was disappearing...). The second advantage is that the packaging allows you to use up every last bit of product. (Note, though, that I do appreciate the 'wand' feature of UDPP -- if only they'd change the shape of the bottle; it defies logic!) I'll never feel particularly excited about shelling out $20 for a primer, but given that this actually works, it's probably the best value out there for me.